Designing the city of our dreams

Posted September 14, 2015 by Tara Roth

Designing the city of our dreams

How startups foster ideation and civic activation

Los Angeles represents opportunity, diversity, and the immense potential to pioneer innovative ideas that drive positive change in our community. Like many others, I moved to Los Angeles and was thrilled by the possibilities and uncertainty of a new beginning in a city that has a robust communications network, booming tech industry, an influential social justice and philanthropic industry.

After years of living in Los Angeles, I've fallen in love with the city, yet much change is still needed. Despite many successes, Los Angeles continues to be affected by issues that include high unemployment rates, low college matriculation rates, and environmental conditions, all of which threaten public health and LA's livability. What makes our city unique, however, is that it allows emerging ideas to manifest into world-changing solutions by fostering a culture of entrepreneurship and collaboration.


$1,000,000 to Make Los Angeles the Best Place to Learn, Create, Play, Connect, and Live

Posted September 8, 2015 by Angie Jean-Marie

Contact: Angie Jean-Marie

[email protected]

$1,000,000 to Make Los Angeles the Best Place to Learn, Create, Play, Connect, and Live

LA2050 launches its third My LA2050 Grants Challenge to turn dreams of a better Los Angeles into reality

LOS ANGELES, September 8th, 2015

Today, LA2050 will launch its third My LA2050 Grants Challenge, a $1,000,000 crowdsourced competition that supports creative ideas to improve Los Angeles. LA2050 is inviting organizations throughout Los Angeles County to submit their proposals to make the region the best place to learn, create, play, connect, and live.

Derived with the support of tens of thousands of Angelenos engaged through #LA2050Listens, a community conversations series, LA2050 has outlined five goals to envision the Los Angeles of our dreams. Through the My LA2050 Grants Challenge, LA2050 will offer ten $100,000 grants to tap into the creativity of organizations across Los Angeles County to inspire a better future for the region. Two grants will be awarded in each goal category, with one selected among the top ten of publicly voted submissions and another selected by the jury.

To date, LA2050 has awarded twenty grants totaling $2 million to local organizations via the My LA2050 Grants Challenge and has activated more than 100,000 individuals who have voted for their favorite proposals. LA2050, which is supported by the Goldhirsh Foundation, has also engaged other local partners in the challenge to extend its impact. This year, the Annenberg Foundation will contribute again with an additional $100,000 to fund one of the projects.

The My LA2050 Grants Challenge is open to non-profit and for-profit organizations as well as government agencies serving Los Angeles County. Submissions will be accepted online through October 6th, 2015 at 12:00pm noon Pacific Time, with voting beginning October 20th, 2015. Those interested in participating in the My LA2050 Grants Challenge should visit for contest rules, eligibility guidelines, and submission instructions.

For more updates, follow LA2050 at and and stay engaged using #LA2050 and #BetterLA.

Goldhirsh Foundation

At the Goldhirsh Foundation, (, we connect the dots between the best emerging innovations and the financial, social, and human capital to make them thrive.


LA2050 ( is an initiative driving and tracking progress toward a shared vision for the future of Los Angeles. We are centered around five unique goals that in 2050 Los Angeles will be the best place to learn, create, play, connect, and live.

Angelenos are at it again! Announcing the 2015 My LA2050 Grants Challenge

Posted September 8, 2015 by Angie Jean-Marie

We have been inspired by the Angelenos who have contributed to 500+ submissions, 100,000+ votes and more than $2 million injected into the LA community to support ideas--big and small, new and re-fashioned--to make LA the most amazing region in the world.

We have seen what happens when you tap into the power of Angelenos to change Los Angeles for the better. And we want to see it happen again. We're excited for more submissions, more votes, and greater impact.

Each year, we receive feedback about the My LA2050 Grants Challenge, and we try to respond to those lessons learned. We can't promise perfection, but we can aim for responsive evolution.

To that end, the format of the challenge has changed slightly. There are still two ways to win: this year, the jury will select among the top 10 voted submissions in each goal area and will also select a winner in each category irrespective of votes.To submitters, we can't wait to see what you've got. You inspire us every year. Be sure to check out the FAQs and the submitter toolkit to help answer questions and provide tips to help you conduct outreach once the voting period has begun. We'll also host office hours in September and October to answer more of your questions about the challenge. Stay tuned here on the blog and on Facebook and Twitter for the dates.

To the LA2050 community, we're excited for your participation in the challenge through voting. We can't do this without you and are thankful for your participation. Please share this opportunity with your networks to help amazing organizations change this awesome region.

Keep up with the challenge at and on Facebook (, Twitter (, and Instagram ( using #BetterLA

Announcing the #LA2050Listens Winners!!!

Posted August 12, 2015 by Angie Jean-Marie

Twelve LA organizations to participate in community conversation series about a shared vision for Los Angeles via #LA2050Listens

Today, LA2050 announced the winners of this year's #LA2050Listens grants. Last year, we started #LA2050Listens to solicit feedback from a broad and representative group of Angelenos on the draft LA2050 goals. This year, we put out another call for submissions for events about the latest LA2050 report which incorporates feedback drawn from the previous year's community conversations. This year's #LA2050Listens grants winners will hold events about the shared vision outlined in the report and the metrics LA2050 will use to track progress toward building a better LA.

Through #LA2050Listens, 12 organizations will each receive a $5,000 grant to host local community events about what it takes to build the LA of our dreams. We are so excited about the diversity of these events, ranging from community days to local walking tours! The events are slated to take place before October 20th throughout Los Angeles County.

The winners of this year's #LA2050Listens grants are:

  • Big City Forum will host a community conversation in Spanish and English with Silver Lake residents at the historic Neutra House VDL about redevelopment opportunities, placemaking in underserved communities, and gentrification in LA.
  • Food Chain Workers Alliance & Restaurant Opportunities Center of LA will collaborate with affiliate labor organizations throughout the LA region to host a community town hall meeting in English and Spanish at the UCLA Downtown Labor Center about food justice in Los Angeles.
  • Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles will host “Los Angeles, Our Home 2050," a community forum that will engage residents of Estrada Courts in Boyle Heights, along with local community partners, in a discussion about the future of low-income housing in Los Angeles.
  • Impact Hub will present “ANTIFRAGILE LOS ANGELES: Leveraging Failure for the Future," a retrospective of failed city initiatives in order to create institutional knowledge that new initiatives can leverage to effect change.
  • Impact Rising, in collaboration with YouTube Space LA, Snapchat, 72andSunny, the Center for Nonprofit Management, and The California Endowment, will host a ProduceAthon connecting creatives and content creators with local causes aligned with the LA2050 goals to help tell their story through new media.
  • LA Commons will host a walking tour inspired by the newly released book, Latitude: An Angelenos Atlas, asking a diverse set of Angelenos to create their own unique maps of LA.
  • Neighborhood Council Sustainability Alliance will build on events surrounding the 2015 Congress of Neighborhoods to host a co-design session bringing together citizen feedback and artist renderings to create a plan for LA's future.
  • Operations-South Bureau Community Stakeholder Collaboration will host three community events in the LAPD's South Bureau service area to spark conversations conducted in English, Korean, and Spanish about the future of Los Angeles.
  • Pacoima Beautiful, with additional support through the Great Streets Challenge Grant from the Mayor's Office and the Urban Land Institute's Healthy Corridors Initiative, will host a listening session to explore the vibrancy of the Van Nuys Boulevard and solicit community input about ways to activate public spaces.
  • River Wild will host a pop-up event in Elysian Valley to highlight and provide proof of concept for the creation of economic development through arts and commerce along the LA River
  • Urban & Environmental Policy Institute, Occidental College will invite residents of Northeast Los Angeles to participate in a planathon to inspire and inform a city process to update the NELA community plan.
  • Wilmington Chamber of Commerce, Council District 15, and LA-Más will collaborate to host pop-up programming and pilot temporary installations that will inform On Avalon, a plan to improve the experience, safety, and viability of Avalon Boulevard in Wilmington.

Here's the full calendar of events.

Be sure to check the blog for updates and follow #LA2050Listens to learn more about these events. We hope you will attend and share your vision for the future of Los Angeles!

Apply for a $5,000 #LA2050Listens Grant

Posted July 14, 2015 by Angie Jean-Marie

Last year, we finalized the LA2050 Goals with your input through a series of community-led events that solicited feedback on the draft LA2050 goals from a broad and representative group of Angelenos.

Today, LA2050 released a report that tracks progress toward our shared vision for the future of Los Angeles using these LA2050 Goals.

We are continuing the #LA2050Listens series in order to learn more from you about the progress outlined in our report. For instance, what excites or concerns your community the most about the findings in the report? What additional data points should we be tracking? Are there activations we might promote or strategies that your community suggests to accelerate progress?

Please apply here for a $5,000 grant to host an #LA2050Listens event in your community and lead a conversation about the reports. You can learn more about the 2014 winners here.

The events should be participatory and engaging, but the format and design are completely up to you. In 2013, we saw everything from bike-in movie theaters to basket weaving – it's time to get creative!

Applications are due by August 4th, 2015 at noon. You can apply and learn more here!

LA Transportation Technology Fellowship

Posted May 7, 2015 by Shauna Nep


May 7, 2015

Contact: Communications Office, 213-978-0741


A one-year fellowship, funded by Goldhirsh Foundation grant, will help bring LA transportation into the digital age

LOS ANGELES – Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced a new transportation technology advisor fellowship at Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT). Serving in a one-year fellowship, made possible by a grant from the Goldhirsh Foundation, the technology advisor will create a citywide strategy that outlines the future of road safety, road use efficiency, traffic regulation, and traffic enforcement and will create a policy plan for the City to ensure a safe, mobile, sustainable future for the Los Angeles.  

The technology advisor will work closely with DOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds and Chief Technology Officer Peter Marx and will help position Los Angeles as a national model in sustainable, tech-enabled transportation and as a test bed for technologies that will change the future of transportation. The advisor will also help the DOT design strategies to meet the transportation goals outlined in the Mayor’s Sustainable City Plan, released last month.

“It’s about time the car capital of the world planned for the future of transportation in the digital age – moving beyond the car to bikes, ride shares, and autonomous vehicles,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “Working together with my Department of Transportation General Manager Seleta Reynolds and CTO Peter Marx, this expert will help us answer questions about how LA can better prepare our streets, systems, and infrastructure to make our city the most livable, modern city it can be.”

“Technology is exploding the choices people have to get around town: carshare and rideshare are here and growing; bikeshare is coming next year; and the arrival of connected and self-driving cars is imminent,” said Seleta Reynolds, GM for LADOT. “These choices hold tremendous promise to reduce congestion, save lives, and make transportation fun again, but only if we have a thoughtful plan to get to these outcomes. Taking full advantage of technology in transportation is natural for LADOT, among the first to go all in on smart signals and smart meters. We look forward to leading this first-of-its-kind strategy for our city.”

“Los Angeles has long been associated with advancing transportation,” said Chief Technology Officer Peter Marx. “We’re seeing technologies today that will dramatically change how we move around our City. We see technologies emerging everywhere we look, whether it is using a tablet on the subway, charging an electric vehicle from a streetlight, using a smartphone to find a route, or riding in an connected autonomous vehicle. LA will continue to lead in thinking through how a City moves around most efficiently, most sustainably, and most enjoyably.”

“LA has the talent, the creativity, and the political will to be a global leader in the next generation of technology-driven transportation,” said Goldhirsh President Tara Roth. “We here at the Goldhirsh Foundation look forward to supporting Mayor Garcetti’s vision to define the future of mobility for Los Angeles.”

Mayor Garcetti announced the fellowship at today’s Fast Company FC/LA Creativity Counter Conference in Playa Vista. Interested applicants can visit to sign up for more information.

This initiative is part of Mayor Garcetti’s agenda to infuse technology to better help Angelenos get around, including supporting ridesharing at LAX and creating a data-sharing partnership with the traffic smartphone app Waze to help Angelenos cut commute times.

Earlier this year, Los Angeles was ranked 4th in a list of 70 major American cities for high-tech transportation options in a report from CALPIRG Education Fund and the Frontier Group.

Keep up with LA2050